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Flames newcomers get jersey numbers

On Wednesday night, some minor news broke regarding the Calgary Flames and jersey numbers for free agent signings Jacob Markstrom and Chris Tanev.

As everyone expected, Jacob Markstrom will wear #25 for Calgary. But Chris Tanev inherits #8 from incumbent Juuso Valimaki, who shifts to #6.

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Markstrom has worn #25 throughout his NHL career and even dating back to his time in Sweden. Nobody had it in Calgary, and despite the number being honoured in the Forever A Flame program in honour of Joe Nieuwendyk years back it’s remained in circulation. The number has been vacant since Nick Shore used it at the end of the 2017-18 season.

Tanev has worn #8 throughout his NHL career, aside from #18 briefly after he arrived from college. (He also wore #8 during his single season in the NCAA). So, being a 500-game NHL veteran, it makes sense that Valimaki made the swap. #8 has been worn by a long list of Flames over the years, most notably the likes of Doug Risebrough, Valeri Bure, Brendan Morrison and Joe Colborne.

Valimaki wore #8 during his rookie season and #42 in training camp, but he wore #6 throughout his junior days with the Tri-City Americans and given his success in the WHL returning to that digit makes a lot of sense. Veteran Dalton Prout had #6 when Valimaki made the NHL roster in 2018-19, so he opted for #8 instead. #6 also has a long varied history, being worn by players including Ken Houston, Ric Nattress, Phil Housley, Cory Sarich and Dennis Wideman. Brandon Davidson wore #6 during his brief Flames tenure last season.

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